The Sportsman named Restaurant of the Year by The Good Food Guide

By Joe Lutrario

- Last updated on GMT

The Sportsman named Restaurant of the Year by The Good Food Guide

Related tags The Good Food Guide The Sportsman Kent Stephen Harris

The Good Food Guide has named revered North Kent venue The Sportsman as its Restaurant of the Year in its The Good Food Guide Awards.

The Seasalter gastropub has also been newly anointed to ‘World Class’ status by the influential and long-standing restaurant guide, joining L’Enclume in Cumbria, Ynyshir in Mid-Wales, and Moor Hall in Lancashire. 

The Good Food Guide editor Elizabeth Carter described the venue - which is run by chef patron Stephen Harris - as “rock solid”. 

“It’s still hard to book, it’s astoundingly good value, and it’s as relevant today as when it was the new hot ticket,” she continues. “They’ve got a take-us-or-leave-us attitude, which is not irreverent, it’s just ‘this is what we do’.”

Six restaurants achieved ‘Exceptional’ - the guide’s second highest honour - including Mýse in North Yorkshire, The Cedar Tree in Cumbria, and CORE by Clare Smyth in London.

Other key awards include London’s Mountain being crowned Best New Restaurant, James Carn of Lark restaurant in Suffolk being named Chef to Watch, Brighton’s Furna winning Drinks List of the Year, and Our Farm - Simon Rogan's Cumbria farm that offers the A Day at Our Farm experience - taking home Best Farm to Table Restaurant.  

“It’s a new era for The Good Food Guide with a new look and a revamped rating system,​ but the Guide’s deep-rooted values remain exactly the same,” says Carter. 

“There’s always been a lot of excitement surrounding our awards, and this year we’ve overhauled them to better reflect the fast-paced changes in Britain’s dining out scene. I’m incredibly proud of the entire awards list as every restaurant on it, not just the winners, sets the standard by which all others should be measured.”

In place of the usual ranked list, The Good Food Guide has moved to recognising Britain’s top restaurants by their rating as Exceptional and World Class, with individual awards (including Best Front Row Seat and Best New Restaurant)  marking out the leaders in their field. 

The Good Food Guide prides itself on in-depth inspections and detailed, longform reviews. In an age of recycled content, it’s an invaluable and trusted resource to help readers seek out the perfect restaurant for their taste and budget. With the current economic climate, the need for confidence in dining choices has never been greater and with over 70 years of experience, The Good Food Guide has invested heavily in new ways to access their content -  via an app, website and social media - without compromising the quality of output.

The Good Food Guide was acquired in 2021 by Knife & Fork Media, owners of hospitality perks platform CODE, which has made a series of changes to the publication including dispensing with the print edition of the guide.

Adam Hyman, founder of Knife & Fork added: “It’s no secret that the hospitality industry has been through a torrid time over the past few years with the impacts of Brexit and the pandemic. Yet our awards not only prove the resilience of hospitality as an industry, but show just how much dining out across Britain has evolved for the better in the past 70 years." 

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